Dodgers, Astros heavy favorites to square off in World Series

By Vincent Frank
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Dodgers find themselves on an absolute roll as we head into the dog days of summer. They enter this weekend’s action with a 46-23 record and having won 20 of their past 27 games.

Over in the American League, the Houston Astros boast an identical 46-23 mark and have won 26 of their past 35 games since a ho-hum start to the regular season.

It’s in this that we shouldn’t be surprised that the two are odds-on Vegas favorites to take on one another in the World Series. The odds themselves are actually pretty darn alarming.

Would we bet against these two facing off in the Fall Classic? No.

But given the odds, there are some other solid plays out there.

The New York Yankees have been ravaged by injury after injury this season. In fact, Giancarlo Stanton and Aaron Judge have played a combined 23 games. Each could return as early as next week.

Despite this, New York heads into the weekend in first place in the AL East with a 41-26 record. Giving them +700 odds could be a boon for those who put money down on the Yankees.

Heading over to the AL Central, the Minnesota Twins might be MLB’s biggest surprise this season. They currently sit at 45-22 and 11 games ahead of the second-place team in the division.

With +750 odds and that type of lead in the division, Minnesota could be a solid buy. After all, it likely won’t have to think about playing in a wild card game. That’s no small thing for a squad without a true ace starter.

Los Angeles’ biggest competition in the National League will likely come from a team back east in that of the Philadelphia Phillies or Atlanta Braves.

We can’t count any team with Bryce Harper in the mix out of contention right now. Giving them +1400 odds seems to be favorable to those who believe this team will progress as the season draws on.

Though, the Braves at +1100 is the real wild card here. Flush with the best young roster in MLB, the sky seems to be the limit in Atlanta.

Stud rookie Austin Riley has been otherworldly this season. He’s hit 10 homers and driven in 29 runs in just 26 games. He’s joined by Freddie Freeman (18 homers), Ronald Acuna Jr. (15 homers) and Dansby Swanson (13 homers) in forming a powerful lineup.

While the bullpen remains a work in progress in Atlanta, Mike Soroka and Max Fried have combined for a 14-4 record with a 2.81 ERA on the season. The addition of former Cy Young winner Dallas Keuchel looms large here, as well.

Safe bets might be on the Dodgers and Astros. But at this point, a matchup between the Braves and either New York or Minnesota remains a strong possibility. That’s the moral of the story here.